The remote Kimberley area of Australia

By Dee Hornback
This item appears on page 72 of the August 2010 issue.
King George Falls

Located between Darwin and Perth, the Kimberley area of Australia is very remote and and has one of the most beautiful coastlines in the world. While planning our first trip to Australia, I discovered the Kimberley on the Internet and brochures from cruise companies followed. We had to go! The logistics of arranging the March ’08 trip were too much for me, so I threw myself on the mercy of Qantas Vacations (866/915-4359) and, $36,000 later, my husband, John, and I had a 13-day cruise booked. It included the lowest class of accommodation on the True North (Western Australia; phone +61 8 91921 829,, round-trip air from San Francisco in Premium Economy and five nights’ hotel accommodation.

The reason for the extra hotel stays was that air service to Broome and return from Wyndham was only twice a week, so we had to budget an extra week just to get to and from the Kimberley. The True North, which holds 35 passengers and 19 crew, is a truly elegant ship. The ship comes with its own helicopter, which takes off and lands on the top deck. Our cruise price included three scenic heliflights (50 minutes each) to the most dramatic spots. (Pictured above is King George Falls, as seen from the air.)

Though every day of our trip got better and better, the primary reason anyone goes to the Kimberley is to see this golden chunk of God’s Earth. Going up in a helicopter and seeing, from horizon to horizon, no sign of civilization, just majestic scenery, don’t be surprised if you’re brought to tears! I’d be happy to answer any questions sent to us.